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Letter: Don’t believe what you read

I’m writing to both chastise and thank you for the story on Bishop Brady’s graduation ceremony (Monitor front page, June 8).

I thank you, Mel Flanagan, for helping me prove a point, and illustrate a lesson I’ve attempted to impart to my kids. I’ve always told them not to believe everything they read in the media, especially the internet, and the newspaper. I’ve had direct knowledge with regard to both quotes and details of a few newspaper stories. Out of those few, only one was accurate. The rest had incomplete or out-of-context quotes (or outright fabrications) and inaccurate facts.

This brings us to the aforementioned story. Surely the writer knows the difference between first-rate reporters and second-rate reporters is that good ones get their facts straight and check those facts. That this reporter can’t get the name of the valedictorian correct leads me to question any fact she subsequently prints. Had the writer simply gotten a copy of one of the hundreds of programs available at the ceremony, this error would not have occurred. It may seem trivial to most, but probably not to Emma Nelson and her family. She worked hard to earn the designation as valedictorian, and getting her name wrong must have been disappointing to her, to say the least.

I won’t even ask why it was an above-the-fold front-page story, without a single photo, and the Hopkinton ceremony got a larger headline and multiple photos.

I would love to see the day that the writer were somehow awarded a Pulitzer, and the name on the award would be something like “Mol Finegan.” Oh to dream!



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